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Pics of Colin's Squiring!

I had never seen the pictures at this link on Tir-Y-Don's web site until just now when I did a google search on "hastilude."

Too bad the links to larger images don't work. I'll have to bug Auric.

Speaking of which, Hastilude is week after this, so plan your trip!

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War Points Schedule

The Battle schedule is online at

I'll be going for almost the full two weeks. I have to be back at UVa for Move In Day, which coincides with Pack Out Saturday at Pennsic. So I'll be leaving Thjora to rely on my squires to help take the camp down. Hint hint.

This schedule is already noted in the Household Calendar, linked to the left on this page.

You've registered for Pennsic, right? if not, do so here at this link! Our camp is, as usual Vair & Ermine.

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News from 12th Night

Aside from hours of hat fun, the other bit of excitement from the event was getting word from Reynard. Though he spent almost the entire event in the kitchen, safe from my inquiries, I did finally find him toward the end of the evening when decoration break down started.

According to the good baron, he has my new shield templates and says that the shields themselves are "in progress." Hooray!

For those who haven't heard me talk about these shields: The first one is a super-duper high quality Reynard version of my current shield. In other words, a pretty standard heater made of wood, but built by a master woodworker with fancy epoxies, marine plywood and carbon fiber edge reinforcement. My first one lasted for years and years.

The second one is larger, but only because it has quite possibly the deepest curve you can find anywhere on the right side of a crappy plastic barrel. If I recall correctly, the depth of curve on the template from the center of the top edge of the shield to the outside corners is eight inches!

This may require some relearning of blocks, but it should be an interesting exercise. And one provoked by seeing pictures of 13th century shields so deep that when knights held them in position, they were completely inside the curve.

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Don't Buy Leather Armor

I've worn leather armor almost exclusively for 18 years. Aside from metal helmets and heavily padded aketons that didn't need kidney belts, all my visible gear is and always has been leather. I've made my own stuff, often using only borrowed tools, a needle and a razor knife back in the poor days. I was apprenticed to Sir Tojenearum, a leather working laurel/knight whose helm was leather. I preface this with those thoughts with that so you know where I'm coming from.

I have rarely, if perhaps ever, seen leather armor that I thought was worth the cost from a professional leather worker. This is due to a variety of issues, which I'll try to put in order from biggest to smallest:

  • Leather is expensive as a raw material compared to metal or plastic. So the finished product will be expensive if you pay someone for their time. Many novice (and not so novice) leather armorers look at the stuff on the metal armorer's table and say to themselves "I can make that!" But leather is not steel, nor is it aluminum. It does not lend itself to articulations, attachment to metal strips, or gothic breastplates. Not if you want it to function as armor, rather than a costume.
  • Leather is considerably easier than metal to make work, but not to make well. The "entry cost" for tools to start doing leather armor is low. So people who really just don't know the proper techniques for working leather get into the business. To my continued shock, I almost never find a leather armorer who even knows how to correctly attach straps, a technique they could learn by flipping through basic leathercrafting books in the rack at Tandy. Or the library.
  • Once you put the work into it, a reasonable hourly cost makes it more expensive than steel or aluminum, which is less expensive as raw material. The difference between competitively priced profitable leather armor and unprofitable leather armor is probably the difference between improperly constructed gear and properly constructed gear. For example, in most leather armor for sale, almost everything is held together with "speed" rivets--those round headed brass colored dots. That's not the way to do it for any join that takes stress. At the least, copper or brass rivets and burrs should be used, but stitching is the way to go for real durability. But hand stitching is very time consuming, and an industrial leather sewing machine like a Landis can run thousands of dollars. So leather gear sellers don't, as a rule have them.

So here's what I suggest if you want leather armor:

corby's picture

No to Fall Crown

For a variety of reasons centering around a misbehaving dog and a planned house renovation, Thjora and I have both decided that I will not fight in the upcoming fall crown tourney.

Plenty of other reasons gave us pause as well: gas prices, a summer reign, the need to focus on expanding the fighting community in Isenfir among others.

I know I had given several people the impression I intended to fight, and in fact that was the case until just recently. My apologies if I misled anyone.

Spring crown seems like a go though.

Fighter Club

This is the link to the yahoogroup I was telling some of you about last night at C'ville practice:

Please join up if you are intersted.


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For the Rich

If you have all the time and money in the world, go with Raven Armory.

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Links and how-to articles on weapons for heavy and rapier fighting.

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Links & Other Resources

SCA related links and the occasional how-to article.

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One Sexy Helmet

Someone tries on my helmet, and immediately gets surrounded by beautiful young ladies.


This is from the regular practice/demo on grounds at UVa, last night.

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